“The Post” is really a movie aimed at those of the Greatest Generation and the Baby Boomers. I was born in the ‘59, so I was at the tail end of the BB, but definitely remember the daily horrors and national dialog on the Vietnam War.
In 1967, our Defense Dept. did a in-depth, very secret study of our 25 year involvement (post WW2) in Southeast Asia, but most specifically Vietnam.
This covered the tenure of 4 US Presidents, from both parties, that all seemingly kept sending more troops and money to a knowingly unwinnable war.
But to save face, the war movement continued to be greenlighted despite 10’s of thousands of US serviceman deaths and billions spent.
A copy of the study, which became known as the Pentagon Papers, was made by then US military analyst Daniel Ellsberg after it became clear this document would never see the light of day and the war would continue. In the early 70’s, Ellsberg got the “Papers” to the Washington Post after 1st giving to the NY Times (see the movie for that storyline).
The Post was at that time local Washington DC paper that was going thru a difficult time the passing of the owner Phil Graham as well as the company going public. Katherine had to assume the leadership of the paper in a most tumultuous time at the paper and in the world. The movie does a excellent and linear portrayal of Mrs. Graham as a weakish leader/publisher to a dynamic one that would shape history with her decision to publish the Pentagon Papers (and subsequently fight the embarrassed White House before the Supreme Court for that right to publish). Newspapers across the country picked up the Washington Post story and led to their transformation to a national paper.
This was a very important time in American history and the film “The Post”
does a terrific job transporting the audience their and enabling us to capture the tension. Add in the marvelous casting of 2 Hollywood icons, Tom Hanks as Executive Editor Ben Bradlee and Meryl Streep as Mrs. Graham, you have all the hallmarks of the terrific film. Maybe not as tense as say “The Spotlight” was, you are fully presented with the most critical storylines of that era woven Into one excellent film. Should gather lots of end of year acclaim/awards.